Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Chicken Noodle Soup...

...For The Hungry Tummy!

I absolutely LOVE my 
Southern Living Cookbook!

I'm not sure if you can buy it
through Barnes and Noble or
on Amazon, but I got mine when I was a 
consultant for the Company.

It is full of really yummy recipes
and Southern fare, to which, 
I am partial.

I tried this recipe last week and 
I have to say, it is by far
the best tasting 
Creamy Chicken Noodle Soup
this girl has ever had!

Sharing the recipe and in these {my switcharoo's}.

I didn't take photos of the making because if one
doesn't know how to chop veggies, 
one shouldn't play with fire! 

Creamy Chicken Noodle Soup

Prep: 20 minutes    Cook: 55 minutes

1 tablespoon butter {2}
1 large onion, chopped
3 cups chopped cooked chicken
3 cans (14 oz.) chicken broth
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 (8 oz.) package spaghetti noodles
broken into 2 inch pieces
{I used dumpling noodles
but I think egg noodles 
would be good too}
7 celery ribs, finely chopped
{I used 4 and sliced}
6 carrots, finely chopped
{I sliced}
1 teaspoon poultry seasoning
1 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon grated lemon rind
2 cups milk
{I used Heavy Cream}
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese

Melt butter in a Dutch oven {large soup pot}
over medium heat.
Add onion and saute until tender.
Stir in chicken and next 
9 ingredients and 
bring to a boil. 
Reduce heat and simmer 45 minutes.
Stir in milk and return to simmer.
Remove from heat and
let stand 10 minutes.
Sprinkle each serving with cheese.

12 servings

I served this with a rich heavy bread {with butter}.

Hope you like it as much as we did/do!

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Valentine's A Comin'!

The day of the Love profession
is coming!
Do you have any good
crafts to make?

I'll be perusing 
for some inspiration.

The boys and I decided we will make
pretty cookies
and some hand made
to give to the 
cutie girls on the block.

I see heart shaped
lacy doilies in our future.

This will make for a fun
post, dontcha think?

Enjoying our rainy weather today
and admiring my roses in
photos since they're all
resting at the moment.

Hope you're keeping warm!

Monday, January 21, 2013

Vintage Flowers

This little Violet has been with me since
we moved into this house.
We're talking two years
{wow, time flies!}.

I was worried I was gonna
lose her a few times
despite the loving care
I gave her.

  I learned Violets do not 
like to get their
leaves wet. So I placed her in a
 cup and saucer

from my Great Grandma's
china and started watering
her from the bottom.

Beautiful things started happening!

The leaves grew greener
and I got blooms!

There are more little
purple nuggets
just waiting to emerge, 
under that soft, lush foliage.

Maybe GG or Granny is
here helping me tend to my 
vintage flowers.

Life's lesson:
Taking the time to learn how to properly 
care for and nurture something
brings beautiful results,
regardless of what it is:
A relationship, your children
or even a little plant. 

Who knew my little Violet
and GG and Granny would 
remind me of this without
having to say a word.

Love is a beautiful thing...

xo, Amber

Sunday, January 20, 2013

"Don't Ever Give Up...

On Your Dreams."

Don't you just love finding those quotes with
a beautiful photo attached that 
touch your heart and instantly put a smile 
on your face because it just magically
at the right moment
when you just want to throw 
in the towel?
{phew, that was a long sentence!}
I do.
I save many of them.
When I start losing hope,
I scroll through and find 
one that lifts me back up
and re-lights the fire.
Sometimes I even 
"write it on the wall".
{Big Chalkboard}

I know some of my dreams are larger than me
and I open my big fat yapper and think
them OUT LOUD.

That's just me.

So in case you feel like I do, I'll share some 
of them that remind me to not give up.

I think life would be pretty sad if we didn't have
dreams or goals to strive for.

So here are some of my faves:

And my absolute favorite...

Don't give up!
I won't if you don't.

xo, Amber

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Let's Talk Kitchens!

I thought I would NEVER say this, but...
we live in a pretty cool Era.
Although my values are old school,
the ability to turn to the computer  
for inspiration in planning, designing 
and decorating,
is priceless.
Since we are slowly inching our
way to buying our next home,
I am always looking for great ideas.
My number one room of choice:
The Kitchen!
I've got my checklist, photos and do's and don't's,
all ready to go!
I have found that I am drawn to a certain style,
certain materials, and a layout
that is waaaay different from the house we
currently reside in.

Here are some INTERNET found 
inspirations.  None of these are my photos, K?

I love all of it! Marble, wood, white and those windows!
{I love white cabinets and lots of windows and marble,
can you tell?}
That island is amazing! Love the reclaimed wood.
Small and cozy. Love!

I LOVE windows, Can ya tell?

Just somethin' about it.

THEN, there's this.....

I think I could absolutely live with this too. 

With all of this inspiration,
I think I will let our future home/kitchen
tell me what it wants. 

Well, unless it already looks like one of these!

Happy dreaming, Friends!

xo, Amber

Friday, January 11, 2013

In L.O.V.E!

I am in love with old houses!
Living in Southern California,
there aren't many here, that are old
enough for me to love.

When I'm in an adventurous mood
{which is always}
I have a favorite site I like to travel the States with:

I have found many places I would love to
travel to with my camera 
and capture the old 
these homes were built with.
They just don't make 'em like they used to!

We are planning another little vacation soon and 
we are headed to the South. On my list of to-do's
will be the Walking Tour so I can see this
She was built in 1856.
I am in love....

Look at that moulding and that chandelier and that 
original pine floor!
Be still my heart.
I think I'd even leave the pink walls. 

Now, off to check airfare!

xo, Amber

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Neglected Surprise

With winter in full force,
most of the garden in fully dormant.
I spent a couple of hours this
weekend cutting back the roses
and cleaning up the brambling vines.

Behind the picket fence lie the veggie beds.

I've been a lazy gardener.

I pulled the last of the frost bitten
tomatoes and my chili peppers.

My kale, lettuce and spinach have been
nibbled to itty bitty stubs.

But, to the left...

glorious green!

I tangled my peas and radish together.

FYI: rodents don't like radish.
My last attempt at growing peas ended with
something biting the tender stems and killing
all of my plants.
Not this time!
I planted them together,
and it worked!

I will have to remember this for the Spring.
I'm going to border the entire garden in radish!
Good thing we like them.

Rinsed, trimmed and sprinkled with a little salt.

Now, to find some recipes (if they exist) for an 
abundance of radish.

xo, Amber

Tuesday, January 1, 2013


I usually wait until after New Year
to put the Christmas decor away.
For some reason, I was a little more 
eager to do so this year.

So, the last day of the year,
away it went.
Starting the New Year "clean"
feels good.

I did leave our faux tree up with just 
the white lights
I moved it to the corner of the dining room.
I like the ambient light when I'm
up late or rise before the sun.

I brought some pieces in from the garage too...

Bring it on, 2013!
I'm ready...
are you?

xo, Amber